COMFORTING THE GASSY BABY
Swallowing air and passing gas is a normal part of growing up. But excessive intestinal gas can make a young baby miserable. A mother of one of my gassy little patients describes these bloated episodes: "When my daughter is trying to pass gas, it is like a mother going through a difficult labor." Try these ways of getting the air out.
Letting Less Air InGetting More Air Out
# If breastfeeding, be sure baby's lips form a good seal far back on the areola.
# If bottlefeeding, be sure baby's lips are positioned on the wide base of the nipple, not just on the tip.
# Tilt the bottle at a thirty-to-forty-degree angle while feeding so that air rises to the bottom of the bottle; or try collapsible formula bags.
# Eliminate fuss foods from your diet if breastfeeding (see elimination diet.
# Feed baby smaller volumes more frequently
# Keep baby upright (at about a forty-five-degree angle) during and for a half-hour after a feeding.
# Avoid prolonged sucking on pacifiers or empty bottle nipples.
# Respond promptly to a baby's cries. First and foremost, be sure to burp baby during and after feedings. You can also try the following techniques and remedies (see Comforting Colic, for more about these):
# abdominal massage
# baby bends
# simethicone drops
# glycerin suppositories
# tummy rolls